BMG To Offer ‘Custom’ CDs

Bertelsman Music Group’s BMG Direct, Inc. will now allow its customers to decide which songs belong together on a CD. Through an alliance with CustomDisc.com, BMG plans to offer custom-made CDs to the more than 9 million members of its Music Club.

The new customizing feature will start on September 30th, when BMG’s mail-order customers will be able to choose songs from multiple genres and artists to create their own compilations of up to 70 minutes of music. Music Club customers will also be able to choose the artwork for the CD case, create their own title for the product and select a special gift message.

A typical 10-song disc will sell for $15.99 (US$) plus shipping, which varies by $1 to $3 from the price of a pre-made disc from most record labels. product and select a special gift message.

Plenty of Practice

BMG and CustomDisc, under a separate agreement, have been working together on a similar project since April. The pair offers customized CDs to major corporations to use as promotional gifts and marketing incentives. Although CustomDisc has relationships with other recording companies to sell their tracks on its Web site, this is its first agreement with a mail order record company.

CustomDisc.com, owned by Custom Revolutions Inc., of Stamford, Connecticut, specializes in the creation of custom digital products for consumers and businesses. CustomDisc.com has licensed more than 200,000 individual tracks from more than 160 record labels. The company also has established a distribution network of more than 100 online music retailers, radio stations and music Web sites.

The companies did not say that the agreement is exclusive. “BMG Direct is clearly the largest and most successful direct marketing unit in the music industry,” Custom Revolutions Chairman David Gould said. “This agreement deepens the productive alliance between our two companies and gives us the unprecedented opportunity to reach nearly 10 million loyal BMG Music Club customers.”

About BMG

BMG owns the Arista, RCA, BMG and Windham Hill record labels, and its BMG Direct music club is the largest in the world, competing primarily with Columbia House. BMG also operates GetMusic in a joint venture with Universal Music Group to promote artists and sell their music online. GetMusic highlights various types of music on sites such as peeps.com, bugjuice.com, twangthis.com, connect2music.com and rockuniverse.com. The genre-specific sites are linked to getmusic.com, an e-commerce site with about 250,000 titles available from BMG and Universal.

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